Monday, August 5, 2013

Journey Stop #11: Montana

First two page spread... The park let itself to two page spreads, I took advantage of the situation, using my 'artists license' often. 

Detail of two pager 

First morning in Yellowstone Park... I like to arrive several days before the class, searching for good sites, shade,  etc. 

I met this lady, working in oils that first day out. She and her friend were doing a great job as the second lady's husband did a yeoman's job of moving equipment .  The sketch is typical of how I start a journal sketch -big shapes and little detail. 

Remember, I always paint the focal point first...actually here, I painted the dark pines around the lighter rocky cliff. Notice how the white highlights on the rocks look brighter than the plain white paper...that happens due to the dark values around those white highlights. 

Another two pager...First day of my class found us just ten miles from the west gate, as I didn't want to spend lots of time driving. 

Detail of two pager ... do not go crazy with detail; simplify as much as. possible.

Detail of second two pager. Again, the contrast between the dead downed tree and the dark pines create the needed contrast for the focal point.

A simple pattern of trees and  rocks.

Of all the water falls in the Yellowstone, I prefer Gibbon, as it is very visable from the road and is very active. I chided the NPS for not having any restrooms at such a very busy site!

Another double pager. Now we are in the Tetons; a perfect time for a two pager. This view had a niumber of big pines along the shoreline which I removed. Mostly.

Detail of first Teton sketch.

Detail of other half of Teton spread.

At this location. the pines almost blocked out the background  mountains which I wanted to support the feeling of the region. Thus the simpllication of the   trees and distant mountains.

Fly fishermen are plentiful which add action and scale to the sketch.


  1. Beautiful drawings of a very special place to me. I just wish I had done them. So inspirational you are!

  2. I see your sketches and get so inspired! Thanks for sharing these.

  3. Your art is just beautiful! Can't wait to go to Montana in a few weeks!

  4. Replies
    1. I got back to my base in Ohio, in October, where I have spent the long, miserable winter!!!!... glad that Spring is here. It's now May and I am about to head to the Adirondack Mtns, for a week oof journaling with friends... cannot wait! DG

  5. I am extremely motivated by your work! I had open heart in February and have taken up watercolor as therapy! Thank you for sharing your it so much